A single mum is teaching her son that women are as powerful as men after the Olympics inspired her to start boxing.
Roxanne Johnson, 22, from Three Bridges, said she has fallen in love with boxing since joining Crawley Amateur Boxing Club (ABC), in Three Bridges, five months ago.
The Commonwealth Drive resident was inspired to try on some boxing gloves after Great Britain’s Nicola Adams became the first female boxer to win an Olympic gold medal in the London 2012 games.
She said: “I was not a sporty person at all. I was never part of a sports club before but seeing a woman win a gold medal spurs you on.
“I’ve really dedicated myself to it now. I’ll never give it up. I’m in love with it.”
The mum-of-one has taken her four-year-old son, Brandon, to the club.
“I like to show him what mummy does. He knows what boxing is but I want to show him what I can do and I hope he’s proud of me that I can do other things and I don’t just clean and cook!
“I want him to see it’s not just a man’s domain and women are equal to men.”
Crawley ABC, which is held at The Arthur Hopcraft Gymnasium, in Jubilee Walk, was awarded a grant for £2,778 from West Sussex County Council to expand it’s changing facilities in January after it received a surge in new memberships since summer 2012.
Club secretary Michael Decker said he had noticed more females joining up.
He said:“Prior to June 2012 we had two female members - around two per cent of the then 100 or so members - we now have ten female members out of around 150 members, so it’s now just over seven per cent.
“I think people are slowly beginning to realise that amateur boxing is not simply about fighting, it’s a sport - and is actually far less dangerous than football, rugby, and equestrian sports.”
Roxanne agreed that the sport was different to her expectations.
She said: “It’s not as aggressive as people think. There’s a lot of skill involved. We don’t just do it to beat each other up, we do it to practice our techniques.
“It’s a lot harder than I thought. The fitness level is out of this world.
“I was the only girl in my class when I started but more have joined now. Some come for one class then give up because it’s really tiring.
“I’ve tried to get friends to take part but they don’t want to go into a sport where you could get punched in the face.”
Roxanne said she is a ‘girly girl’ and enjoyed surprising people by telling them of her new hobby.
She said: “I think looks can be deceiving. With boxing, it’s about someone’s power.”
To find out more about Crawley ABC visit www.crawleyboxing.co.uk